Cheers: This Is The Hottest Rooftop Experience on Ambergris Caye

by Carolee Chanona

Is there anything like savoring a rum-tinged tipple during a humid twilight, far above the traffic of humming golf carts? A fiery sun slips just below the horizon of the Caribbean Sea ahead, and its intensity refracts and scatters onto the Vista Rooftop Pool & Lounge, where round windows on the pool bottom overlook Alaia’s entryway below. It’s hard to choose a favorite answer to that first question, which is why mine would simply be “impossible”. These days, guest experiences are far more than laying your head down at night. And there’s no better platform to deliver a memorable experience than on a rooftop. Starting with the newest resort on Ambergris Caye, Alaia Belize falls just outside of San Pedro Town with a modern collection of oceanfront buildings wrapped in all-glass framed balconies. And on the 6th floor, Belize’s first suspended rooftop pool and lounge sit right on Ambergris Caye.

Hit the heights with a cocktail in hand

If you’re flying into San Pedro, Alaia Belize is sure to catch your eye on your approach by puddle-jumper. On its exterior, bright green vertical plant walls contrast with the honey-colored wood and white facade. Inside, natural materials combine with plush white linens for 155 units spread across signature suites and private villas; spanning 1,000 feet of beachfront access, this Marriott Autograph Collection is carving its own rendition of barefoot luxury. Besides being the country’s first and only luxury resort to offer PADI dive certification, Alaia Belize hosts the first suspended pool outside of its two pools (not counting the beachfront villa’s private plunge pools, either).

“The developer was smart in that he didn’t just make it a pool but he made it a destination,” said Sandra Grisham, general manager of the Alaia Belize Autograph Collection. “When you’re on our rooftop, you see things [on Ambergris] you would not normally see unless you were on an airplane.”

Who needs a drone when you have 360-degree panoramic views of Ambergris and a cocktail in hand on a rooftop?

On the menu: Asian Fusion

Vista Rooftop Lounge recently re-launched a menu that’s chockful of Asian-inspired small bites alongside an impressive cocktail menu. Favorites like Crispy Chili Prawns and a Seared Spicy Roll—with a Caribbean inclusion of plantain thanks to San Pedrana and Sous Chef Jasmine—meet fusion newbies like Asian Salbutes. Belizean Salbutes—a typical fried masa round topped with recado-spiced shredded chicken and cabbage—are the inspiration behind Alaia Belize‘s Asian Salbutes for beef tataki, edamame, and chipotle aioli. Finally, wash it down with a classic, like the standard Belizean rum and coke, or a special, like an Asian Dragon mule.

During the day, the adults-only rooftop bar also converts into a breakfast nook; views are served alongside brunch up to 11 am.

All images courtesy Alaia Belize.

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